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Bulgaria Nationalist Firebrand Eyes Presidential Office Again June 27, 2010

Posted by Yilan in Bulgaria, Turkey, Turkish minority of Bularia.
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Bulgaria: Bulgaria Nationalist Firebrand Eyes Presidential Office  Again
The nationalist, whose party has capitalized on the anger at crime, corruption, poverty and tapped on the ethnic debate, voiced concerns over the lack of clarity regarding the other candidates.

Bulgaria nationalist leader Volen Siderov, who lost the run-off in the last presidential elections four years ago, is determined to run again for the high, though largely ceremonial, office.

“This is the easiest thing for me to do. I have been there before and I can see no reason why I should not run for president next year on the ticket of my party Ataka,” Siderov told journalists on Friday.

The nationalist, whose party has capitalized on the anger at crime, corruption, poverty and tapped on the ethnic debate, voiced concerns over the lack of clarity regarding the other candidates.

“I am the only leader of a party who has clearly showed readiness to run for office at the presidential elections,” Siderov added.

He pointed out that it is very important to know the nominees and their proposals one year before the vote so that “last-minute behind-the-curtain” maneuvers are prevented.

Bulgaria’s Prime Minister and ruling party leader Boyko Borisov is the only one to have announced a likely candidate. Borisov said in May that his center-right ruling party GERB will nominate Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov to face off current Socialist head of state Georgi Parvanov in the upcoming presidential vote in 2011.

Later however he added that the candidature is open to discussions, while analysts were quick to blame him of trying to divert attention from the economic crisis plaguing the country.

Bulgaria’s leftist President Georgi Parvanov made history on October 29, 2006 for he became the first head of state to be re-elected after a defeat of nationalist leader Volen Siderov with a record-high 75% of the votes.

Parvanov’s victory may have been easy and predictable, but was preceded by an embarrassing run-off with nationalist leader Volen Siderov.

Experts played down Siderov’s showing but he dealt a heavy blow to all mainstream parties, which was widely described as an aggression against the status quo, the end of Bulgaria’s much-famed ethnic model and a breakthrough in the presidency.

Siderov capitalized on the anger at crime, corruption, poverty and tapped on the ethnic debate for the power that Parvanov handed to the ethnic Turks gave him a bad reputation, many votes and a powerful card in Siderov’s hands.

Brussels shuddered at the thought that an ultra-nationalist became the second-best candidate to usher the country through the threshold of the European Union, but Parvanov himself said he does understand and sympathize with the nationalists’ voters and their woes.

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